Diversity: “Facebook Not so White and Male-eish” in 2017

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In 2016 Facebook came under lots of global scrutiny following the release of its workforce data.

Non-white tech workers and allies used the #FBNoExcuses hashtag to call attention to what many saw as the company neglecting its responsibility for diverse hiring by blaming the so-called talent “pipeline”.

Come 2017 and the giant social media service has made little but commendable progress in addressing the same concerns after it made public data on its employee demographics in an effort to show its progress on workplace diversity.

Like most giant global tech companies, Facebook is facing the challenge of having a predominant white workforce while within its technical and leadership roles it has predominant male employees.

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However according to the new data, the numbers are mostly better than they were a year ago, and in some cases, much better than they were in 2014.

The 2017 employee data highlights the following positives:

  • 35% of Facebook’s global workforce is women, up from 33% last year and 31% in 2014.
  • In the U.S., the number of Hispanic employees increased from 4% to 5%, and black employees rose from 2% to 3%.
  • Facebook’s senior leadership is 92% white or Asian, the same as it was in 2016. That number was 93% in 2014.
  • Women hold 19% of Facebook’s technical jobs, up from 17% in 2016 and 15% in 2014.
  • Women make up 28% of Facebook’s senior leadership, up from 27% in 2016 and 23% in 2014.
  • This year, 7% 0f Facebook’s staff self-identified as LGBTQA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or asexual), based on a 67% response rate.

Facebook which boasts of a global community of over 2 billion people acknowledges the need for a more diverse and inclusive organization saying that diversity is it’s cornerstone for building better products, making better decisions and serving its community more excellently.

In order to achieve its diversity objectives, Facebook highlighted three main programs that are playing a critical role to its success. This include

1. Diverse Slate Approach:

This is a program that sets the expectation that Facebook hiring managers will consider candidates from underrepresented backgrounds when interviewing for an open position.

2. Managing Unconscious Bias:

This is Facebook’s publicly available class that encourages its people to challenge and correct bias as soon as they see it – in others, and in themselves.

The firm has also doubled down by adding two new internal programs: Managing Inclusion, which trains managers to understand the issues that affect marginalized communities, and

Be The Ally, which gives everyone the common language, tools and space to practice supporting others.

3. Facebook University:

A program whose objective is to increase access and opportunity for students with an interest in software engineering, business and analytics.

Facebook University gives underrepresented students extra training and mentorship earlier in their college education.

Facebook is not the only company trying to bring more diversity to Silicon Valley — but it is one of the leaders.

The entire tech industry has been under pressure for years to increase diversity in what has historically been a white and male dominated industry.

This efforts are definitely steps in the right direction in keeping Diversity and Inclusion alive at the workplace.

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